Thorny Beast of the Dunes

This thorny beastie (which to date, I have been unable to identify), living amongst the sand dunes of Lancashire, England, is a real beauty to behold …

… provided you stand well back that is, as this thistle’s spines are pretty vicious.

Today’s contribution to Tuesdays of Texture (de monte y mar).

Day Sixteen: Treasure & Close-up

There is so much in life to treasure but ultimately for me are my son and a sense of deep inner contentment, something that eluded me for a sizeable chunk of my life. Thankfully those moments have been increasing in frequency and duration over a number of years and I treasure every one of them.

A Heaven Scent Journey

Oh my, what a prompt. Set me off on a long journey of aromas.

I wandered back in time, ambling around the garden remembering the different flowers, then sauntering along the country lanes recalling all the different hedgerow blossoms and scented verges.

Which led to the evocative aromas of the Scottish Highlands. The smell of moist peat, bracken and ling merging with the heat of a warm sunny day. It is a smell that reaches so deeply inside, you really have to experience it to believe its effect.

Then onto that most heavenly musty moist mix of all sorts of smells blended together as a consequence of a shower of rain in the middle of summer. Whenever it happens, my world stops, wherever I am. I am gripped by the experience and indulge fully in the moment.

I have always been very sensitive to smell – a curse and a blessing!

I know when certain people are thinking about me as I become aware of the smell I associate with them. It comes across as strong as if I was with them in person.

For years after my grandma died I kept smelling rice pudding cooking, immediately I was transported back to the kitchen. Then my mind would join in and add the smell of the kitchen and the personal aroma of grandma.

My mother reappeared with the smell of cooked tomatoes, something we both loved and probably the only thing we ever shared. I have never quite mastered the exact taste when I make them, probably on account of being unable bring myself to add the excessive amount of butter she used to cook them in.

I simply adore the scent of the lilac which transports me back to grandma’s front garden with its giant lilac bush in the corner. As a child I was known for sticking my nose into every flower to investigate its scent.

But my all-time favourite has to be the May blossom, so captivatingly beautiful at this time of year. Her heady scent so invasive, I can smell her with the car windows closed. She evokes so many joyful memories of warmer days and even warmer rainy days. Each time I smell her, the world stops for a moment. And another cherished memory is born.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Smell You Later.”

Broken – Rusty Old Gate

I love broken things. I think I missed my vocation in life, I should have set up a junk yard. I can see potential uses for most things and always enjoyed the challenge of repairing something.

This old rusty gate has seen better days. It gave up the ghost of its past life a number of years ago but has been given another role – of keeping the sheep out!

I love the contrast of the rusty metal against the old stone wall with the patches of lichens to brighten it up, all set in a sea of green.

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Broken.”

Forces of Nature – The Wild Wind

Just sharing my passion for the wind today and a quick snapshot of the effects of the wind whipping up the dead grasses, flinging them against the wire fencing. Where they catch the wire they wave frantically, a real joy to watch. Ah the simple things in life.

With a constant wind speed of F7 to F8 which is between 32-46 mile per hour (51-75 km/h) and gusts coming thick and fast as strong as F9, it really is not too bad out there. I can just about make out the sea in the greyness. If it wasn’t for the white horses galloping across its turbulent surface, I wouldn’t know the sea was even out there. Still it is a much nicer wind than in the winter months, then it comes in with such ferocity and an almost violent edge, you can feel the damage that could occur as it hits hard anything in its path. It comes with a bite too, a sharp maddening bite that reaches to your core.

Today though, it is powerful, in a gentler way. Softly pushing you over, almost playfully, rather than just flattening you. The Spring winds. There is a softened, almost rounded edge to it too and a tinge of warmth, a hint that the winter may actually be over with for this year.

I love the wind, Spring Summer Autumn Winter, no matter what the season. Each has its own personality, a general behavioural pattern, even though each time it revisits it has a slightly different edge on its return.

You won’t catch me out though. I can read you loud and clear and I still love you no matter how you show up.